In part I, I described in moderate detail why homemade yogurt is super healthy and why it is more beneficial to make it yourself rather than buying from the store (cheaper AND healthier).
This post will get to the nitty gritty how-to’s. There are all sorts of ways to make yogurt & achieve the same results. You don’t need any special equipment or hard-to-find ingredients. Just milk, yogurt, a crock pot & a thermometer.
Here’s a step-by-step guide along with printable at the end.
1/2 Gallon Fresh Milk
1/4 cup yogurt starter
(can use either commercial starter or plain yogurt from the store-see previous post for brands)
1. Heat milk gently to 160 degrees F. (I turn the crockpot on low-it takes about 2-3 hours-you can also heat gently over the stove, preferably in a double boiler to avoid scorching).
2. Cool milk to 110 degrees F and stir in live cultures. Make sure it isn’t too hot–if >120, it will probably kill the live cultures, if too low, it won’t activate.
3. Let yogurt ferment at 110 degrees anywhere from 8 hours to 24. You can just turn the crock pot off & wrap in a few bath towels, leaving it overnight. Other options for keeping it at 110 include: in the oven with a pilot light or light bulb on, leaving on a heating pad, placing in a dehydrator with heat controlled setting, using a cooler with hot water…be creative! (I’m not that creative. I usually just leave it in the oven & the pilot light works!)
4. Stir vigorously to stop culturing and place in the refrigerator. It will thicken as it cools. Once cool, strain yogurt over cheesecloth or cloth towel until desired thickness.
1. Eat plain or add sweetener, cinnamon, & vanilla.
2. Top soups like this one.
3. Blend into a smoothie.
4. Create a parfait with fruit.
5. Mix in some seasonings & spices for a veggie dip.
- 2 Quarts Fresh Milk (low fat not recommneded and avoid milk that has been “ultrapasturized”)
- ¼ cup starter–plain yogurt with live cultures works well! (Seven Stars and Dannon are both brands that will work)
- Clean glass jars
- Heat milk slowly and gently to 160 F (I just set mine in a crockpot on low–it takes 2-3 hours).
- Let cool to 110 F (turn crockpot off–takes about 2 hours).
- Add starter yogurt. Whisk to incorporate throughout mixture.
- Culture yogurt at 110 degrees anywhere form 5-24 hours. (wrap crockpot in towel or place in oven with light on to maintain temperature).
- Stir yogurt vigorously to stop culturing and place in the refrigerator (it will thicken as it cools).
- Once cold, strain the yogurt (using a cloth towel or cheesecloth) to desired thickness.
Linked: Chef Not Included